Since I started changing my relationship with food and fitness, I noticed my Facebook page has sort of morphed from the usual fare of Grumpy Cat memes and other fun stuff to include more of my food, and of course, I also post a link to my blog entries to share them with my friends. Now, I know that there are plenty of my friends who are happy with who they are and where they’re at, physically and mentally, and to them, I say, “awesome, more power to you!”
There are also the select few who poke fun at food or recipes that I’ve shared, commenting that it’s missing meat (egads!), or I’m converting into one of those health-crazed Californians when I post a Shakeology picture. These guys are my friends, but it still annoys me that they are mocking my choices. But, then I reminded myself that I am not doing this for anyone else but me. There’s no point in trying to justify why I’m changing my life to people who are just trying to shame me. I’m not the jackass whisperer!
I’m reminded of a time when I was in college. I had gained about 50 lbs since high school, and my cousin had commented on it. He said something along the lines that the family fat genes were catching up to me. And at the time, I accepted it. Practically my whole immediate family on my dad’s side is overweight, so obviously, it’s genetic, isn’t it? Most of them have been on some diet or another for most of their adult life. My aunt has even had her stomach stapled, but it didn’t make her thin.
My dad had amazing results on Atkins, twice, but gained the weight back as soon as he went back to eating “normally”. I remember back in the day, my grandmother had the cabbage soup diet posted on her fridge. She was forever trying to diet and lose weight. She doesn’t have to worry about that now, as she’s 89 and her health is failing and she can’t even keep weight on.
I firmly believe that my grandmother would be in better health today if she had been more active throughout her life. I see her frailness, and I know that yes, everyone eventually will decline, but how much better would her life be right now if she had been physically fit, and not just skinny? I see her, and all I can think is, I don’t want to grow old like that. Wracked with pain from tiny fractures caused by osteoporosis, unable to walk without assistance, needing oxygen to breathe at night.
As far as I know, I’m the only one in my family trying to make a change like this. Not just changing what I eat, but changing the way I feel about food. I’m working out and building muscle, because I don’t just want to be thinner, I want to be healthy. Thinness is not a sign of health, it just means you’ve got good genes. I want to be fit, and most of all, I want to be happy. Happy with myself, happy with how I look, and happy about what I have accomplished.
I can’t vanquish the naysayers. There will always be someone, somewhere who just doesn’t get it. There will always be people who are happy the way they are, at whatever weight that is. And that’s fine. Not everyone wants to get “ripped”. It’s okay. I’m not here to tell you that you’re wrong, that if you want to be happy, you have to look like Shaun T. I’m not sure I want to look that ripped! I want to be strong, fit, and try on clothes without being disgusted with myself.
I’m not saying that people who are happy about where they are, physically and mentally, are jackasses. What I’m saying is that there are always going to be people in your life, wherever they may be, who will try to bring you down, by mocking your efforts, or making fun of your food choices. Don’t let them bring you down! Whatever your goals are, however much weight you want to lose, however much muscle you want to gain, those are things that no one can take away from you. Don’t let other people determine your course; you are the master and commander of your own future. Let them poke their fun, but in the end, you’ll have the last laugh.
*sorry for the edit, I hadn’t finished my entry and I accidentally hit publish.